In the fast-paced world of tween entertainment, it’s not enough to be good. You have to be the best.
As any parent of a tween can tell you, tweens have the attention spans of fruit flies. If you don’t have a hit on your hands, how far away could you possibly be from a total flop? Those fickle kids are determining your fate, after all.
So it’s no surprise to hear that the industry is tracking the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon like hawks:
“For the longest time Nickelodeon was the dominant player but there is now a real race,” Katz Television Group vice president of programming Bill Carroll said. “Nickelodeon has not gone down but relatively they’re not as high.”
Carroll acknowledged the buzz generated by Disney Channel’s Hannah Montana and two High School Musical movies, saying, “In perception, Disney leads by a head. And in the entertainment industry, perception is reality.”
Still, despite the perceived and real challenges Nickelodeon faces, it would be hard to find a healthier network, said Derek Baine, a cable television analyst at SNL Kagan Research: “The network still has a huge cash flow margin — at 67% it’s one of highest in the industry.”
The article tracks the development and strategies of both channels, and it’s really interesting to see how each network plotted their rise to stardom.
As for which one can be declared king? Keep wondering.
Still, neither network can be pronounced a hands-down winner.
Well, thank goodness for that, right? This way we can keep arguing about it. And if my daughter is any indication at all, we can have the Hannah Montana vs. iCarly discussion for hours on end. (I can hardly wait—just let me go find my earplugs.)